Buying your first home is a process full of both delight and trepidation. Viewing properties and making choices about where you want to live can be a lot of fun, but none of this will be any good if you haven’t arranged your mortgage. The time it takes to get a mortgage can vary enormously, but there are ways to make things easier for yourself.
Your Mortgage Application Process
There are 2 phases to a mortgage application: the agreement in principle and the fully underwritten agreement leading to a mortgage offer. It’s a good idea to get an agreement in principle before you start viewing houses. If you do this, you’ll know how much the mortgage provider will be willing to lend you based on your income and credit rating. Getting the agreement in principle can be the quickest of the mortgage application process steps if you have the correct documents (usually bank statements, proof of income and proof of identity) with you and you’ve already chosen the deal you want. With all this in place, you can often have your agreement in less than half an hour. A poor credit rating can slow down the process and you might be refused a mortgage because of this.
Your Mortgage Offer
The next stage in the mortgage application process timeline is to make an offer on a property. You will probably need to show the estate agent or seller your agreement in principle to prove that you can buy the property. At this stage, there will also be more stringent checks on your personal spending habits and finances to make sure you could still pay the mortgage if you should run into difficulties like illness or unemployment.
Your lender will insist that a mortgage valuation survey is carried out on the property to check that it is worth the price you have agreed to. You may find that have to renegotiate with the seller which may delay things. At this point, you may also have to wait for the seller to complete their own moving arrangements which can cause frustratingly long delays over which you have no control.
Speeding Up The Process
The mortgage application process UK-wide can seem a bit arduous but making sure that you have a sound credit rating and evidence of a steady income before you get started will help to speed it up.